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Who is Responsible for Clearing Blocked Drains in Sydney, NSW?

A blocked drain is a common plumbing issue that occurs when a pipe becomes clogged with debris or foreign objects. This can prevent water from flowing through the pipe freely, leading to a variety of problems such as slow-draining sinks and showers, unpleasant odors, and even overflowing toilets.

Who is responsible for clearing blocked drains in Sydney, NSW?

Determining who is responsible for clearing blocked drains in Sydney, NSW can be a bit of a grey area. In most cases, it ultimately comes down to the specific circumstances and who is considered the “owner” of the drain in question.

According to the Sydney Water Corporation, the owner of a private drain is typically the person who maintains and controls the drain. This is usually the property owner, but it could also be the tenant if they have been given express permission by the owner to maintain the drain.

If the blockage is in a public drain, the responsibility falls to the government. In Sydney, this means the Sydney Water Corporation is responsible for maintaining and clearing any blockages in public drains.

Are there any exceptions to this rule?

While the property owner or tenant is generally responsible for clearing blocked drains on their property, there are some exceptions to this rule. If the blockage is caused by tree roots or a broken pipe, Sydney Water may be able to provide assistance with clearing the blockage. It’s always best to check with the relevant authorities if you’re unsure about who is responsible for clearing a blocked drain on your property.

What should you do if you have a blocked drain?

If you suspect that you have a blocked drain, the first step is to determine who is responsible for clearing it. If it’s a public drain, you can contact the Sydney Water Corporation for assistance. If it’s a private drain, you’ll need to contact the property owner or tenant to see if they are responsible for clearing the blockage.

Can you unblock a drain yourself?

If the property owner or tenant is responsible for clearing the blocked drain, you may be able to unblock it yourself using a plunger or a drain snake. However, if the problem persists or you’re unable to unblock the drain yourself, it’s best to call a professional plumber. They have the knowledge and expertise to quickly diagnose the problem and find a solution.

What can a plumber do to unblock a drain?

When you call a plumber to unblock a drain, they will first assess the situation and determine the cause of the blockage. They may use specialized tools such as a hydro jet or a sewer camera to clear the clog and restore the flow of water. In some cases, they may also need to remove and replace damaged pipes.

Can blocked drains cause damage to your home?

Yes, blocked drains can cause significant damage to your home if they are not addressed promptly. As water builds up in the pipes, it can cause them to burst, leading to costly water damage. In addition, the standing water in a blocked drain can create an ideal breeding ground for bacteria and other harmful microorganisms, which can pose a health risk to you and your family. It’s important to address any blocked drains as soon as possible to avoid these potential problems.


Who is responsible for clearing blocked drains in Sydney, NSW largely depends on whether the drain in question is private or public, and who is considered the owner of the drain.